Tug of War for U.S. Patent Lead

In 2019 Korean company Samsung earned top honors in the U.S. Patent race. Samsung led all companies with 9,253 U.S. Utility Patents obtained. U.S. technology giant IBM was a close second with 9,223. For overall patents, Samsung was also top dog when adding on an additional 613 Design Patents.


No other company come close to the two patent leaders. Korean consumer electronics giant LG was the best of the rest, with 5,444 U.S. Patents obtained (Utility and Design combined). Rounding out the top ten are Canon, Intel, Microsoft, Apple, Ford, Huawei, and Amazon. Toss in Google for good measure.


Besides sheer numbers of U.S. Patents obtained, Samsung and IBM are not in competition with each other. Samsung is a leader in the global handset market, also selling a large number of consumer electronics such as TVs, tablets, smartwatches, virtual reality headsets, home theater and audio, desktop computers, laptops, monitors, printers, memory devices, home appliances, security/monitoring systems, semiconductors and memory.


IBM, on the other hand is in the business management and Information Technology space, providing many tools and solutions for government and business including business Analytics, business intelligence, Cloud & Smarter Infrastructure, Maximo Asset & Facilities Management, Commerce Solutions, Enterprise Content Management. Advanced Case Management, IBM Collaboration Solutions, Messaging and collaboration, Information Management, IBM Rational, and Security Systems.


IBM and Samsung have battled it out for the U.S. Patent lead since 2007. Before 2007, IBM was the sole leader. In 2007, Samsung outpaced IBM with 3,256 U.S. Utility Patents compared to 3,134 by IBM. Samsung had the most in 2008, but IBM came back and led each year from 2009 to 2013. Samsung took the crown from 2014 to 2016. IBM battled back in 2017 and 2018. In 2019 Samsung reigned supreme.

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